One protein mediates damage from high-fructose diet | Science News

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One protein mediates damage from high-fructose diet

Sweet reversal: Harmful effects of fructose traced to one protein in a study of mice

By
2:19pm, March 3, 2009

Knocking out a liver protein in mice can reverse the damaging effects of a super-sweet diet. Diets loaded with high-fructose corn syrup wreak havoc on metabolic processes, but how fructose does its damage has been a mystery. The new study, appearing in the March 4 Cell Metabolism, identifies a possible culprit, a protein in the liver called PGC-1 beta.

The new research is “putting together things that we know and making a link,” comments Carlos Hernandez of the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor. The paper highlights the importance of PGC-1 beta in the whole process, says Hernandez, who wrote a commentary in the same issue of Cell Metabolism on the new research.

Over the past decade, high-fructose corn syrup has made its way into Western diets through soda and processed foods in ever-increasing amounts. Diets high in fructose are linked to a slew of metabolic disorders, including nonalcoholic fatty liver disease, high blood levels of

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